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PIA Press Release

BIR padlocks erring groceries

By Alice Nicart

Borongan City (15 October) -- The Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) District Office here executed recently "Oplan Kandado" in two prominent merchandising establishments in the city, in compliance to National Internal Revenue (NIR) Code No. 115.

Revenue District Officer Eduardo Gayas said in an interview that Commissioner Sixto Esquivias of the BIR National Commission signed the closure order of Laine Merchandising and Peter James Stores after the five day VAT compliance notice lapsed. The notice was extended in order for them to amend their previously given stand, but to no avail, thus, the padlocked.

The Officer added that BIR has been conducting surveillance operations on several business establishments in the entire province as ordered in the NIR Code. The newly assigned Revenue Officer also said that Eastern Samar is poor in tax compliance, compared to other provinces in Region 8.

The interview gathered that it was July this year, when the surveillance had since been done, and the two groceries were found out to have had an under-declaration of their actual sales.

Gayas cited the importance of revenue collection, and said further, that for every peso that his Bureau can collect, forty centavos goes back to the LGU in the form of Internal Revenue Allotment (IRA).

Asked how they usually find out the incorrectness of entry, Gayas candidly declared that during operations, there are assigned BIR personnel who would visit the stores and do their job. He added that, the storeowners are even aware of the presence of their officers because they are usually armed with a mission order and an office ID; also, after each day of observation of the actual sales, the storeowner signs the BIR document as if to conform with the BIR men, on their dayís business transactions. Comes now the tax payment period, BIR compares their audit trail with the documents submitted by the stores and there would bare the discrepancy.

In a phone call, Laine Sual, owner of Laine Merchandising lamented that the BIR order came so stiff.

"What they donít understand is the truth that our customers may appear aplenty each day, but all our merchandise are borrowed from dealers who come direct from Tacloban and Cebu in trucks and closed vans," Mrs. Sual said. "Besides, where would I search for the whooping amount they are requiring me to pay?" Laine mused. The young entrepreneur however is positive they can open their business soon.

The two stores mentioned are the most accessible outlets in the city where customers, particularly housewives conveniently drop by from their work or from the church but, Laineís Merchandising is just a newly opened store about a year ago while Peter James Store recently spent a big amount when it rehabilitated its near-dilapidated building.(PIA-Eastern Samar) [top]

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